The three newest free games for Xbox Live Gold members have been revealed for January, including a murder-mystery, an off-road racing adventure, and one of the most popular role-playing games ever released.
First up we have D4: Dark Dreams Don't Die by Access Games. This episodic game follows the path of a private investigator named David Young who travels through time to solve the mystery of his wife's murder after the trauma of the experience erased his memory. The player uses certain found objects to trigger the time travel and the Xbox's Kinect motion controller is used for gesture controls throughout the game.
In IGN's review of the game from September, the gaming site called D4 an "intriguing experience" that is "brimming with personality." Overall, IGN gave the game a score of 7.0 saying that it has a "genuinely first-rate presentation."
D4: Dark Dreams Don't Die regularly retails for $14.99 but will be free on Xbox Live Gold from January 1 through the 31 on the Xbox One.
Next up, we have MX vs. ATV Alive, an off-road racing game that allows you to compete against AI or online with your friends in several different motocross and supercross tracks with anything from a dirt bike to a four-wheel ATV. The game originally launched in 2011 as the fourth title in the MX vs. ATV series.
In Gamespot's review, the site points out that the new pricing model that offers a cheaper game with more content available through downloadable content isn't the best option for developer THQ. "MX vs. ATV Alive is a better racing game than its predecessor, but sadly, it's not nearly as good a value proposition. Even after you spend several hours unlocking all that it has to offer, this is a game that's sorely in need of more content. It's coming, but rather than adding to an already fully featured game, here, it's hard not to feel like DLC will merely bring it closer to being the game it should've been from day one."
MX vs. ATV Alive retails for $19.99 but will be free for Xbox Live Gold members from January 1 through the 15 on the Xbox 360.
And finally, we have the game that will take over the second half of the month for the 360, The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings. This action RPG is a sequel to 2007's The Witcher and is based on the series of novels by Polish author Andrzej Sapkowski.
In the game, you play as Geralt of Rivia, one of the last genetically enhanced humans who was trained at an early age to fight monsters.
Gamesradar calls the game "one of the best RPGs you'll play this year" in its 2012 review of the Assassins of Kings edition that came with the port to the Xbox 360. "The immersive world, memorable characters, exhilarating combat, and branching storylines will have you coming back to play it again and again," the reviewer said. "CD Projeck Red seems to have put a lot of TLC into its beloved Witcher series and have delivered an even more complete package (adding the new tutorial, quests, and cut-scenes) than was available at The Witcher 2's original release. If you haven't played this brilliant RPG, dedicate you're next thirty hour gaming binge to the Witcher 2. You won't regret it."
The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings normally retails for $29.99 but will be free for Xbox Live Gold members from January 16 through the 31 on the Xbox 360.